Song In My Head #9: “I’d Like To Know” by Supergrass

Here is “I’d Like To Know,” the rollicking opener from Supergrass’s 1995  album I Should Coco. The Oxford trio’s  first album was Parlophone’s highest-selling debut since the Beatles’ Please Please Me, with good reason. The insanely catchy melodies and breakneck pace set the band apart from the rest of the Britpoppers of the era, but the nearly death-defying falsetto harmonies remain the showstoppers for me.

During my senior year of college, I won a promotion sponsored by one of the Bay Area alt-weeklies. The prize included tickets to Supergrass’s show at Slim’s in San Francisco, and admission to the pre-show “meet and greet” taking place in honor of the band’s newly released second album, In It For The Money. (While many were bemused by that record’s more sedate approach, I’d say it still holds up to repeated listening. For that matter, so do the glorious glam-rock moments on 2002’s Life On Other Planets.) My friend Ginny (who generously agreed to drive, even though she was battling some sort of bug at the time) and I headed to the city for the festivities. It was my first real taste of record-company intrigue, and I remember being put off by all the schmoozing. (While lead singer Gaz Coombes and drummer Danny Goffey seemed to take it all in stride, I have fond memories of commiserating with bassist Mickey Quinn, who sounded lovably sad-sacky about the proceedings.)

Although it was a weeknight, Slim’s was absolutely packed, so much so that I couldn’t even see the band from where we were standing. I do remember that Supergrass rocked impressively, packing a ton of songs into a relatively compact hour-and-a-half (with a Ramones-esque lack of stage banter). While Supergrass broke up in 2010, the members soldier on separately. I read a rave review of Gaz Coombes’ Matador the other day, and so I’m eager to hear that next…

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